Wednesday, 7 January 2015

Lotz, 'Tips Snap Wheat Kings' Win Streak

Austin Lotz stopped all 39 shots he faced in his
first WHL start in his home province.
  The Everett Silvertips scored three power-play goals and got 39 saves from Austin Lotz in a 5-0 victory over the Brandon Wheat Kings on Tuesday night.

  The loss snaps Brandon's five-game winning streak and was the Wheat Kings' first regulation loss in 11 games.

  Lotz was the biggest story of the night, particularly in the first period when the St. Adolphe, Manitoba product made 21 saves including a handful that would be candidates for any highlight reel.

  It was an opening 20 minutes that came back to haunt the Wheat Kings.

  "Our inability to have a...really not a one-goal lead probably a two or three-goal lead after one period.  We only gave up eight shots, we didn't give up a lot of chances against," said Brandon GM/Coach Kelly McCrimmon on CKLQ's post-game show, "When you look at the scoring opportunities that we had, the energy that we played with, I thought our first period was really strong."

  Carson Stadnnyk scored two of the Silvertips' three power-play goals in the contest including the opening goal of the game 6:45 into the second period.

  Winnipeg product Remi Laurencelle made it 2-0 with a power-play goal at 19:10 of the second followed by Patrick Bajkov's even-strength goal just 11 seconds later than give the Silvertips a 3-0 lead after 40 minutes.

  "Giving up the third goal right after the second goal, in the last minute, that's a shift of hockey that you have to do a better job than what we did," said McCrimmon, "That was probably the most disappointing goal and, now, late in the period it's a 3-0 lead instead of a 2-0 lead and it's probably a little deflating for our team."

  Despite the loss, Brandon (29-8-3-1) remains six points ahead of second-place Medicine Hat in the Eastern Conference standings though the Tigers do have three games in hand.

  The Wheat Kings' return to action Saturday when they open a three-game Alberta road trip in Red Deer.

Reid Gow made his Wheat Kings' debut on Tuesday
Chaff...F Rihards Bukarts (upper body), D Kale Clague (upper body), D Mark Matsuba (healthy) and D Ivan Provorov (in transit from WJHC) were Brandon's scratches on Tuesday...D Reid Gow made his Wheat Kings' debut on Tuesday night and finished -1 with a pair of minor penalties...Brandon is now 1-2-1-0 against U.S. Division teams this season, with all four games taking place at Westman Communications Group Place...eight trades were completed in the WHL Tuesday including the long-awaited deal sending Leon Draisaitl from Prince Albert to Kelowna.  You can check out all the deals by clicking here.  The WHL trade deadline is at 2 p.m. (CST) on Saturday...Medicine Hat's game in Victoria, which was scheduled for today, has been rescheduled for Thursday.  The Tigers were stuck in Revelstoke, B.C., with the highway closed due to avalanche conditions.

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